Oral history interview with Ben Padrow

Oral history interview with Ben Padrow [Sound Recording 01] Oral history interview with Ben Padrow [Sound Recording 02] Oral history interview with Ben Padrow [Sound Recording 03] Oral history interview with Ben Padrow [Sound Recording 04]

Identity elements

Reference code

SR 9041

Name and location of repository

Level of description



Oral history interview with Ben Padrow


  • 1979-01-16 - 1979-02-09 (Creation)


.1 cubic feet; 2 audiocassettes (2 hr., 14 sec.)

Name of creator


Biographical history

Ben Padrow was born in 1927 and grew up in Portland, Oregon. He studied speech at Lewis and Clark College, and began teaching high school in Hermiston after his graduation in 1949. He left a year later to continue his education at the University of Oregon. After graduating, he taught at Palomar College in San Marcos, California. In 1954, he and Delores Esther Mintz were married; they later had two children. In 1955, Padrow returned to Portland to teach at Portland State University. He served on the Multnomah County Commission from 1971 to 1974. He wrote speeches for several Oregon politicians, including Betty Roberts and Bob Straub, and served on Multnomah County Commissioner Don Clark's staff. He died in 1986.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

This oral history interview with Ben Padrow was conducted by Charles Digregorio in Portland, Oregon, from January 16 to February 9, 1979. In this interview, Padrow discusses his family background and early life in South Portland, including his experience as a Jewish person. He briefly talks about his college education and early teaching jobs. Padrow discusses teaching at Portland State University beginning in 1955. He describes the growth of the campus during that time, discusses his teaching style, and talks about his students. He also talks about his other activities, including moderating the television show High Q, and coaching the school's College Bowl team. He talks about working as a speechwriter for various Oregon politicians, gives advice for delivering speeches, and discusses working as a consultant. Padrow discusses his involvement in the Democratic Party, particularly serving on the Multnomah County Commission from 1971 to 1974. He closes the interview by discussing the future of Portland State University.

System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

Collection is open for research.

Physical access

Technical access

Conditions governing reproduction

Copyright for this interview is held by the Oregon Historical Society. Use is allowed according to the following license: Creative Commons - BY-NC-SA: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/4.0/

Languages of the material

  • English

Scripts of the material

Language and script notes

Finding aids

Acquisition and appraisal elements

Custodial history

Immediate source of acquisition

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information


Related materials elements

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related archival materials

Related descriptions

Notes element

General note

Preferred citation: Oral history interview with Ben Padrow, by Charles Digregorio, SR 9041, Oregon Historical Society Research Library.

General note

Incomplete transcript (32 pages) and handwritten index (2 pages) are available for in-person use at the Oregon Historical Society Research Library.

Specialized notes

Alternative identifier(s)

Description control element

Rules or conventions

Finding aid based on DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard), 2nd Edition.

Sources used

Archivist's note

Sarah Stroman

Access points

Place access points

Name access points

Genre access points

Accession area

Related people and organizations

Related genres

Related places